0

By Jason Moore

SINCE Argentina started sabre rattling over the Falklands again there has been much debate in Britain whether the armed forces would be capable of mounting a similar operation to recapture the islands in the highly unlikely scenario of a new invasion. Most arm chair generals say no because the defence budget has been slashed. But let us remember that soldiers in the Falklands were forced to march from San Carlos (the landing area) to Port Stanley because of a lack of helicopters (sound familiar?).

The Royal Navy´s fleet of frigates and destroyers were hard pushed to counter the Argentine air threat and had no answer to the Exocet missile. The flagship of the Falklands fleet the aircraft carrier, Hermes, was in “mothballs” when it was sent to the Falklands and it is claimed that the Argentines were better equipped than their British counterparts. British troops now serving in Afghanistan are far better equipped than their Falklands counterparts and I would say that while the Royal Navy is smaller it is probably more capable than it was in 1982. Over the last thirty years the British defence budget has been cut to the bone but Britain is lucky that it has some armed services who can punch above their weight and make do with little equipment.